5 Management and Development Companies to Watch for 2009

This article briefly highlights five companies to watch that are active in ASC management and development. See the complete list of management and development companies to watch for 2009 in the January issue of Becker's ASC Review. Note: This list is not an endorsement of any company.

Ambulatory Surgical Centers of America. ASCOA rigorously helps its partners achieve outstanding results. The company was formed by Brent Lambert, MD, FACS, Tom Bombardier, MD, FACS, and George Violin, MD. Its senior leadership team now also includes CEO Luke Lambert, CFA, and CFO Robert Westergard, CPA, as well as several others. The company has grown to be one of the best privately-held ASC chains in the country. It currently operates 25 surgical centers in many different states. Its typical model includes a minority ownership interest plus a management and development agreement. ASCOA is one of the most highly competent companies in the ASC arena. It focuses on turn arounds and new centers. www.ascoa.com.

Ambulatory Surgical Group. Ambulatory Surgical Group was founded in 2008 by long-term ASC veteran John Seitz. John has founded this company with the intent of providing high level management consulting and development services to ambulatory surgery centers. A key differentiator of the Ambulatory Surgical Group is the ability for physicians to own 100 percent of the equity in the center. In essence, ASG does not need to have equity in the surgery centers that they manage. The two core leaders of ASC are John Seitz and Stuart Bruck. Stuart is also a long-term healthcare veteran with broad leadership experience in healthcare business administration. He joined the company as a co-founder. www.ambulatorysurgicalgroup.com.

AmSurg. AmSurg, with 170 ASCs, is highly focused on 3,000 to 5,000 square foot single specialty centers. It is one of the few pure-play, publicly-traded ambulatory surgical center companies remaining. The company hired CEO Christopher A. Holden in 2007 and has accelerated its growth and acquisition pace since his hiring. It has one of the few models that include no management fee and it focuses heavily on GI, ophthalmology, orthopedics and ENT. www.amsurg.com.

Acumen Healthcare. Acumen, headquartered in Georgia and Texas, works with both physician-owned centers and physician/hospital joint-venture centers. It provides development, operation, accounting and often other services on a non-equity basis. Its leadership team with more than 20 years of ASC experience includes Tom Pritchett, Andy King, Mark Dunlap and Tina King. www.acumen-healthcare.com.

Blue Chip Surgical Center Partners. Blue Chip Surgical Center Partners focuses extensively on spine, multi-specialty and physician/hospital joint-venture centers. It was founded by ASC veteran Jeff Leland who was previously a developer of ASCs at ASCOA. It also has great leadership, and managed care expertise in Jay Rom, Beth Ann Johnston, RN, BS, Richard Roski, MD, FACS, and several others. With several highly profitable, physician-led centers in operation around the company and a number of projects in the works, it has been remarkably successful. The company has a reputation for delivering on its commitments and forging strong physician relationships. It holds an equity stake in its projects and also serves as a managing partner. www.bluechipsurgical.com.

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